Senate Minority Leader John P. McKinney, R-Fairfield, wants the Republican field of gubernatorial contenders to spend more time together: He is proposing 10 debates, two in each of the five congressional districts.

Danbury Mayor Mark Boughton quickly agreed on Twitter: “Make it 20. I’m in.” The other declared candidates are Tom Foley, Mark Lauretti and Joseph Visconti. Sen. Toni Boucher of Wilton has an exploratory committee.

McKinney, who has been running since July, said he is aware of at least one televised debate being organized, but he expects no trouble finding news organizations and Republican groups to host the other forums. He said the debates help the entire field.

“Obviously, the governor always has the biggest soap box,” McKinney said. “As Republicans, one of the ways to counter that is to have debates.”

Gov. Dannel P. Malloy, the first-term Democrat, said Tuesday he will not formally announce his re-election plans until the General Assembly’s annual session ends May 7.

Democrats intend to re-nominate Malloy by acclamation May 16 at the Connecticut Convention Center in Hartford. The GOP will endorse a candidate the next day at Mohegan Sun.

Mark is the Capitol Bureau Chief and a co-founder of CT Mirror. He is a frequent contributor to WNPR, a former state politics writer for The Hartford Courant and Journal Inquirer, and contributor for The New York Times.

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